What is a Dental Exam and Who Does it?
A dental exam is a comprehensive oral checkup done by a dentist or a dental hygienist. The difference between the two is that a dentist deals with all problems related to teeth and gums. While a hygienist only cleans teeth and helps people maintain good oral habits. Good for you, our clinic provides experts in both fields.
Why do you need a Dental Exam?
Numbers show that more than 30% of US citizens do not visit the dentist on an annual basis. While some are just forgetful, most people don’t realize how important a regular dental examination can be and what might be the consequences of not getting one.
Doesn’t matter if you’re 8 or 80, you need to have a routine checkup to maintain your oral health and identify any potentially harmful diseases. In case you end up doing so, you can immediately get it treated, instead of worsening things in the future. It’s always best to deal with problems earlier or prevent them altogether if possible, with our assistance.
What happens during a Dental Exam?
When first visiting our offices, our staff will take a complete medical history of yours. During this, feel free to mention dental or any other phobias and concerns that you might have. We’ll take care of it, be gentle, and provide you with a comfortable experience overall. A complete dental examination consists of three main procedures:
The first step includes a complete oral cleaning by either one of our dentists or hygienists. If needed, a plaque/tartar removal procedure will be carried out using our premium quality tools. Scraping off the buildup will minimize the risks of decay, gum disease, or bad breath. Then, we will floss your teeth and brush them with an electric toothbrush. You can add on a teeth whitening and polishing service during this. If you’re a child we might give you a fluoride treatment where a fluoride gel is applied that helps prevent tooth decay.
After cleaning, a complete examination of your mouth will be carried out, including teeth, gums, the back of your tongue, etc. We might also test your teeth for strength and sensitivity in case you mention any issues regarding that. Our aim is to look for signs of any diseases and treat them at the earliest to protect your smile and maintain good oral health.
Not always, but depending upon your age and medical history, we might recommend a dental x-ray. An x-ray allows access to details that might go unnoticed, such as damaged jawbones or impact on teeth. Moreover, the X-ray covers most parts of your neck. So your dentist will also be able to examine your lymph nodes, neck, lower jaw joints, and the entire arch for any cysts, tumors, or other problems. As a precautionary measure, we place an apron on your chest and use an x-ray technology that emits the least amount of radiation – no more than you would receive from the sun on a regular day out.
Note: An x-ray should not be performed in case of pregnancy unless absolutely necessary.
How Often Should You Visit?
If your teeth are in perfect condition and you’re taking care of basic oral hygiene, your dental health will be fine, and you won’t need to return for another 6 months. However, if you experience discomfort, bleeding gums, or have a history of dental issues, make a dentist appointment immediately and we’ll be there to assist you.